Cliodhna Queen of the Banshees, a new animated short film by Dundalk’s Elk Studios, airs on RTE 2 on Wednesday afternoon at 4.15pm.
It’s the first project by the studios, founded by Ian Hamilton, and was made during lockdown, with the entire team working remotely from their homes throughout Ireland as well as Portugal.
“Cliodhna Queen of the Banshees’ tells the story of Cliodhna, a young girl who is also a banshee,” explains production director Sarah O’Carroll. “This makes her different and she often feels left out but things change at Halloween.”
The story comes from the imagination of writer director Racheal Hynes from Belfast and the team loved it so much that they pitched it to RTE when the national broadcaster put a callout for Halloween shorts.
"We pitched them four different stories and this was the one the chose.”
"It’s been our passion project for the past five months,” says Sarah.
The short features a mix of of 2D animation and physical sets, which were built by creative director Andrew Hamilton in his home in Dublin and by Dundalk native Paul McDonnell who lives in An Spideal, Co Galway.
Meanwhile, the animation team were working in Portugal while the audio was created by Score Draw Music, Belfast.
Around a dozen people were involved in making the film and Sarah reveals that a number of the team, herself included, are planning to move to Dundalk in the coming months.
Elk Studios have a number of projects in development and are working on their own production ‘Moo and Roo take on the World’, a mixed media film which tells the story of two young brothers, one of whom is a wheelchair user.
They are also working on several co-productions with European and American broadcasters.